Since the entire planet is on lockdown during this time, most of us are lucky if we get to go anywhere other than home. While the reasons for our forced “staycation” are more than justified, if you’re anything like me (with an insatiable wanderlust), stir crazy doesn’t even begin to describe what the next few months might feel like. So I thought it might be nice if a few times a week I posted one of my photos from other corners of the globe to help ward off the Corona-blues.  Our bodies may not be able to travel but our minds can go anywhere we like. Enjoy.

April 8, 2020 – Mike Fitzer

I’ve heard it said that dogs sometimes take on the personality of their owners. Certain breeds might lead us to think that they represent their country of origin, a la the German Shepherd or the English Bulldog. If that is at all true then the French Poodle may have a long-lost cousin… the Parisian poboy. 

It was a frigid January day as we walked the streets in a small town on the outskirts of Jean de Cole in the Dordonne region of France. The 180 team was scouting locations for our upcoming film “Under the Eiffel Tower.” Even though it was midday, this particular village was practically void of life. The temperatures were in the single digits, forcing most people to stay inside, but we had a job to do so… Bundle up!

As I walked the streets looking for interesting angles and architecture to support scenes in the film I turned a corner to find a dirty-white mutt of a dog walking across the narrow street. We both stopped, about 20 feet away from each other. He stared at me and I at him. The thing that struck me about him was his confidence. He was small, filthy, maybe even hungry, but if he could talk I imagine he might have said “waddya want from me?” as he flicked a finished cigarette into the frozen gutter.

He continued to stare at me, completely unfazed by my presence so I knelt down and snapped this single photo. When I took the camera away from my eye the dog just sauntered off. Clearly he was bored with our standoff. 

While I was able to capture several beautiful scenes on our week-long scout, this photo remains one of my favorites. When I look at it I can almost go back to that very moment in my mind. I imagine the dog sitting outside, smoking a hand-rolled cigarette, leisurely tasting his wine and not caring about much else. France has that effect on a lot of people... and dogs.